REVIEW: Legally Blonde at Derngate, Northampton

Legally Blonde
Legally Blonde

While you should never judge a book by its cover, this one is just as good as it looks.

I remember loving Legally Blonde when it came out as a film back in 2001, and after seeing the stage version at Derngate last night, my opinion hasn’t changed.

Lucie Jones and Rita Simons

Lucie Jones and Rita Simons

The smash hit Broadway and West End musical based on the movie follows popular sorority sister Elle Woods, who loves to be pampered and is passionate about pink.

When she is dumped by her boyfriend for a more serious girlfriend, she ditches the shopping and parties to get stuck into the books instead.

Packing up her treasured pooch, Bruiser, she bags herself a place at Harvard Law School to try and win him back.

With the support of her new friends, she learns that you can be both smart and fashionable.

Lucie Jones as Elle

Lucie Jones as Elle

Legally Blonde is running at the Derngate this week with Lucie Jones, who was a finalist in the 2009 series of X Factor and represented the United Kingdom at the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest, leading the cast brilliantly.

She lights up the stage with her bubbly personality and fabulous voice, not forgetting her ridiculously cute and very well-behaved four-legged friend Bruiser, played wonderfully by Bruisey Williams-Dodd.

Lining up alongside Lucie are former soapstars Rita Simons, best known for playing Roxy Mitchell in Eastenders, and Bill Ward of both Coronation Street and Emmerdale fame.

Ward takes the role of Professor Callahan while Simons is the lovable Paulette Bonafonte who just wants to get her pet pooch back and find her Mr Right.

Elle with her Greek chorus in Legally Blonde

Elle with her Greek chorus in Legally Blonde

But it’s not just these three who steal the limelight, the entire cast shines as they throw themselves into the story and sing, dance and sparkle on stage.

The show has all the the magic of the film and it’s a great excuse for a few hours of escapism while you sit back and enjoy watching Elle’s journey from pink princess to legal eagle.

The audience seemed to love it, getting into the songs and riding the wave of emotions as Elle sets out to prove she can be serious and just as good as everyone else on her course.

But what was the verdict on our evening?

Just like Elle in the courtroom, it was a triumph and well worth it if you fancy a trip to the theatre this week.

And in honour of the show’s run at Derngate, John Franklin’s next door is offering a range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic cocktails created for the production, including Oh My Gin, Bend And Snap, Ellespresso Martini and Delta Nu.

Legally Blonde is on at Derngate until Saturday, October 21.

For tickets call the box office on 01604 624811.